We have gotten a WHOLE LOT of cucumbers so far from our garden, so I’m trying to figure out some good ways to use them. My first thought was to make some homemade relish, but I need bell peppers for that (which I don’t have enough of those growing yet), we’ve done home canned pickles before and they have just sat on our shelf because we’re not huge pickle eaters (unless it’s on a burger or something) and then I remembered my grandpa’s canned pickled cucumbers from my childhood. My grandpa was an avid gardener and one of my favorite things he made was homemade pickled cucumbers. They taste more like a cucumber than a pickle, but with a hint of dill and a hint of sweetness to boot. At this memory I immediately knew what I wanted to do with ALL my cucumbers! However, Grandpa passed away a few years ago, and my mom was out of town so I couldn’t get the recipe from her. So I checked online and found something similar. This isn’t exactly the same as Grandpa’s (it doesn’t have any dill in it… which I’m sure I could have just added) and these aren’t canned either, you just keep them in the fridge. I like the fridge option for easiness, but I also want to can some as well so I can keep them on the shelf. So anyway, here’s a great recipe for you to enjoy and I promise to share Grandpa’s as well as soon as I can get my hands on it! And if you’ve got some cucumbers growing, you have GOT to try these. They are so refreshing and delicious. But caution, you can easily sit and eat a whole jar at a time!
Homemade Refrigerator Pickles
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- approximately 2 quarts of thinly sliced cucumbers (about 6-7 cucumbers)
- 1/2 to 1 whole onion, thinly sliced (depending on how much onion you like)
- 2 Tbsp sea salt (or regular salt)
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup vinegar
- Slice your cucumbers and onions as thin as you can. (I used my 2-quart drinking pitcher to hold the cucumbers so I’d know when I had two quarts. )
- Place the cucumbers and onions in a large bowl and cover with ice cold water (add 8-10 cubes of ice). Add the salt and stir to combine. Let stand for about 2 hours.
- Drain the water. Then add the sugar. Mix the sugar until the cucumbers are evenly coated (I just use my hands).
- Add the vinegar and mix.
- Spoon it all into mason jars (a canning funnel definitely helps) or some other airtight container and let it sit in the fridge for approximately 24 hours. Note that there will not be enough liquid to cover all the cucumbers initially, so just divide the liquid as evenly as possible among your containers. And as it sits, the cucumbers will make their own juice and eventually they’ll be full almost to the top. You want the cucumbers in liquid if possible, since that is what will enhance the flavor as they sit.